5.9/10
526
16 user 14 critic

The Substance of Fire (1996)

R | | Drama | 14 March 1997 (USA)
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1:40 | Trailer

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Publishing magnate refuses to publish a book by his son's male lover so the kids buy out their father and run it themselves!

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(play), (screenplay)
1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Aaron Geldhart
Benjamin Ungar ...
Young Isaac Geldhart
...
Martin Geldhart
Tom McDermott ...
Old Printer
...
George Morfogen ...
Otto the printer
...
Isaac Geldhart
...
Cora Cahn
...
Mr. Otani jr
Edmund Ikeda ...
Mr. Otani sr
...
Miss Barzakian
...
Val Chenard
...
Gene Byck
Ronny Graham ...
Louis Foukold
John Sullivan ...
Stewart
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Storyline

Isaac Geldhart is a Holocaust survivor who, overcome by grief at the recent death of his wife, seems determined to run his publishing firm into the ground by printing books that have no hope of financial success. His son Aaron, who also works at the company, grows frustrated with Isaac's emotional decline and attempts to take over the firm. The resulting crisis involves Isaac's other two children, his daughter Sarah and his dying son Martin. Written by Jesse Garon <grifter@primenet.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Doing What Is Right... Could Cost Him Everything.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

14 March 1997 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A tűz melege  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$56,221 (USA) (14 March 1997)

Gross:

$56,221 (USA) (14 March 1997)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Film debut of Viola Davis. See more »

Quotes

Social Services worker: It's a process. No one person can come to a conclusion.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Jersey Girl (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An excellent film but lacking something.
16 May 2001 | by (Orange County, CA USA) – See all my reviews

"The Substance of Fire" is a slice of life film which tells of a small time New York Jewish holocaust-survivor book publishing purist and authoritarian patriarch to his adult children; two sons, one daughter. The slice has to do with the slow disintegration of his family owned publishing business and his mental health in the wake of his wife's death, financial woes over his inability to adapt to market demands, and his advancing age.

The film sports a solid cast and excellent performances, especially by Rifkin, and is artistically and technically good. However, when all is said and done, the viewer may wonder why they bothered watching as the story just begins and ends with no apparent reason being; no moral, no message, no lessons, not compelling or thought provoking and difficult with which to empathize. Likely to be of most interest to those who like "all in the family" relationship films.


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